Full Blood Count
A full blood count (FBC) test, also known as a complete blood count (CBC), is a common blood test that provides information about the cellular components of the blood. It gives an overview of the different types of blood cells, including red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets, as well as various parameters related to these cells. The FBC test is often used as a screening tool and to evaluate overall health status.
A typical full blood count test includes the following components:
- Red Blood Cell Count (RBC count): This measures the number of red blood cells in a given volume of blood. It provides information about oxygen-carrying capacity and can help assess conditions such as anemia or polycythemia.
- Hemoglobin (Hb): Hemoglobin is the protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen. It measures the amount of hemoglobin present, reflecting the blood’s oxygen-carrying capacity. Abnormal hemoglobin levels can indicate anemia or other blood disorders.
- Hematocrit (Hct): The hematocrit measures the percentage of the total blood volume occupied by red blood cells. It helps assess the blood’s viscosity and can provide information about conditions such as anemia or dehydration.
- Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV): The MCV measures the average size of red blood cells. It can help classify anemias as microcytic, normocytic, or macrocytic, providing insights into the underlying causes.
- White Blood Cell Count (WBC count): This measures the total number of white blood cells in a given volume of blood. It helps evaluate the body’s immune response and can indicate the presence of infection, inflammation, or certain blood disorders.
- Differential White Blood Cell Count: This provides the percentage of different types of white blood cells, including neutrophils, lymphocytes, monocytes, eosinophils, and basophils. It helps identify specific types of infections, allergies, or other conditions.
- Platelet Count: Platelets are responsible for blood clotting. The platelet count measures the number of platelets in a given volume of blood. Abnormal platelet levels can indicate bleeding disorders or certain diseases.
These are the standard parameters included in a full blood count test. Depending on the laboratory and specific requirements, additional parameters or specialized tests may be performed as needed.
Interpretation of full blood count test results is based on comparing the values with established reference ranges and considering individual patient factors, symptoms, and medical history. If any abnormalities or concerns are identified, further testing or consultation with a healthcare professional may be necessary for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment.
Please note that this information is not a substitute for professional medical advice and it’s always best to consult a healthcare provider for personalised guidance and interpretation of test results.